The anticipated upgrade follows closely on the heels of a new front wing, debuted at Silverstone, as Alpine seeks to augment its performance in light of recent major advances by nearby competitor, McLaren.
Esteban Ocon’s impressive show of fourth in qualifiers and third in the final at Monaco, alongside Pierre Gasly’s commendable fourth-place speed in Q3 in Spain — despite a subsequent six-place grid penalty — illustrate the team’s potential.
Nonetheless, the past few race weekends have proved challenging, with a lack of speed and back-to-back dual retirements in Britain and Hungary.
Although upgrade packages typically roll out in stages and don’t reveal their full effect immediately, in this instance, the team clarifies that the front wing did not rely on the new floor for complete optimisation.
“The floor operates independently from the front wing,” Alpine sporting director Alan Permane clarified during a discussion with F1 Flow.com about the modifications.
“Adding downforce to the car and increasing speed are crucial. While it has no connection to the front wing, it’s a considerable step forward for us.”
On the topic of upcoming enhancements, he disclosed: “We certainly have a significant upgrade planned for Singapore, along with some smaller tweaks for Monza, for instance.”
Photo by: Erik Junius — Pierre Gasly, Alpine A523
Alpine has been outpaced by McLaren in the fight for the fifth spot in the world championship during the previous two races. The Woking team’s 58-point lead from the British and Hungarian GP weekends gives it an 87 to 47 advantage.
When asked whether McLaren’s impressive strides were inspiring, Permane acknowledged: “They’ve done extraordinarily well. They have indeed made huge strides since Bahrain, which was probably where they should have always been, while previously struggling.
“Such a massive leap isn’t standard. Nonetheless, their progress has been commendable. Our primary focus is on our team, perfecting our model and executing upgrades as swiftly as possible.”
When questioned if Alpine’s objective remains to possess the fourth-fastest car, he confirmed: “That remains our goal and our strategy. We are relentlessly striving to reach that objective.”
At the Baku sprint weekend, Alpine faced setbacks when it introduced updates and encountered issues during the lone FP1 session before heading into parc ferme prior to the qualifiers, which led to sub-optimal set-up.
Team principal Otmar Szafnauer remains optimistic that the introduction of the new floor won’t disrupt the Spa weekend.
“I am hopeful that Friday at Spa won’t bring unnecessary stress,” he said when asked about the potential challenges. “We will still install the new floor as it will improve performance, potentially by two-tenths of a second per lap. We have efficient tools to assess it, and we’ll be able to measure its impact on downforce with its built-in instruments.”
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Alpine F1 GP Upgrade
What major upgrade is the Alpine team introducing for the Belgian F1 Grand Prix?
The Alpine team is introducing a significant new floor upgrade for the Belgian F1 Grand Prix, which is expected to improve performance significantly.
Who is Alpine’s main competitor in the context of this text?
In the context of this text, Alpine’s main competitor is McLaren, who has made substantial strides in recent races, prompting Alpine to improve its performance.
What other upgrades have been made recently by the Alpine team?
The Alpine team has recently introduced a new front wing at Silverstone. They also have plans for significant upgrades for Singapore and smaller tweaks for Monza.
What has been the recent performance of the Alpine team?
Recently, the Alpine team has faced challenges, with a lack of speed and back-to-back double retirements in Britain and Hungary.
What is Alpine’s goal in terms of race speed?
Alpine’s goal is to have the fourth-fastest car in the races. The team is relentlessly striving to reach that objective.